Saturday, July 9, 2016

River Hands--By Tricia Knoll--United States

River Hands

I saw ripening first on the backs of my hands –
age speckles and pouchy fists, wrinkles
like retreating tide marks in sand,
then oxbow veins channeled to my wrists.
A watershed of blatant blood canals, these
river hands. At birth, seamless babies
grab fat-finger hurry to taste and suck and taste
all sense out of touch. Then hands go to work.
Blood flows a course, pulsing hot, interlacing
in the high relief of pat, pet, fist up, and stroke.
Older veins lift as a blue roots’ stand-up show,
reminders – well-lived, well-loved, miles flowed
to celebrate a stream of touch-love, fingers bent
as guides to rafting where the delta ends.

Tricia Knoll is an Oregon poet whose aging hands continue to do work that fascinates her - writing haiku and poetry, digging holes for daffodils, brushing a dog, and peeling the skin off cooked beets. Her poetry collections include full-length book Ocean’s Laughter (Aldrich Press, 2016) and a chapbook Urban Wild (Finishing Line Press, 2014).  Website:   


  1. This poem made me consider my own "age speckles," Tricia! Those last four lines are absolutely breath-taking!

  2. The whole poem is marvelous. retreating tide marks in the! Might pinch that line for one of my poems!!
    Great work

  3. Tricia,
    A excellent poem, I couldn't pick a favorite line. Welcome to Whispers!
    Your new friend,
    David Fox

  4. Lovely poem. Love that last line and skilful use of the sonnet form.

  5. Thank you, all. I haven't written many sonnets...this took a bit of work for me.

  6. Dear Tricia,

    This is such a wonderful sonnet--quite impressive since you haven't written many. I'm so glad you are getting greetings and lovely comments on your poem. Welcome to Whispers! I hope you enjoy being a part of our online journal/poetry community.


  7. Hello Tricia. Welcome to Whispers and thank you for sharing your delightful sonnet. I enjoyed it. Continued blessings!

    -MJ (